Funds Available to Fix Neighborhoods
By Ana Gomez Salcido
The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), a federal program that provides annual grants to states, cities and counties is now available to fix neighborhoods in the San Diego County. Applications are being accepted now through November 2, 2018.
The CDBG program is a flexible program that provides communities with resources to address a wide range of unique community development needs. Beginning in 1974, the CDBG program is one of the longest continuously run programs at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
In the past, federal CDBG funds have been used to improve local youth and senior centers, parks, streets, drainage systems, accessibility issues and fire facilities. Depending on the project, money may be available for the community.
Residents and non-profits may propose projects that benefit low- and moderate-income residents in the unincorporated area of the county as long as the projects align with the County’s Consolidated Plan and support the goals of: increasing the availability of affordable, supportive and livable housing; improving the quality, safety, accessibility, and walkability of communities; or increasing and maintaining accessible, available and supportive homeless shelters and services.
The CDBG program was designed to improve low and moderate-income communities. And it works to ensure decent affordable housing, to provide services to the most vulnerable in the communities, and to create jobs through the expansion and retention of business.
The San Diego County allocates CDBG funds toward various community improvement projects in the unincorporated areas of San Diego County and six participating cities — Poway, Del Mar, Solana Beach, Coronado, Lemon Grove, and Imperial Beach.
Housing and Community Development Services (HCDS) will host a community meeting on the application process at 1 p.m. on Oct. 18, 2018 at 3989 Ruffin Rd., San Diego, CA 92123. Anyone needing assistance to participate in the meeting (non-English speaking, hearing or visually impaired, etc.) should contact HCDS staff at least five days prior to the meeting for special arrangements.
The upcoming meeting will also provide general information about the HOME Investment Partnerships and CDBG Affordable Housing Programs, these programs fund affordable housing opportunities such as the County’s First-Time Homebuyer Program.
At the meeting there will also be a presentation about Emergency Solutions Grants, these funds are for improving the quality and number of emergency shelters and transitional facilities for the homeless, and to prevent at-risk families or individuals from becoming homeless. And participants will also learn about Housing Opportunities for Persons with HIV/AIDS, the funds are for affordable housing and services for low-income households living with HIV or AIDS.